Gogo guards 5G plan despite downturn

By Martha DeGrasse

Companies that sell into the travel industry have been hit particularly hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, especially those that sell to airlines. That includes in-flight connectivity provider Gogo Wireless, whose CEO Oakleigh Thorne recently told investors that he would describe March 2020 as “the worst of times,” except for the fact that April was even worse.

Still, Gogo has not given up on its vision of bringing 5G to the skies. The company still plans to upgrade its 250 cell towers to 5G using AirSpan’s virtualized RAN basestation technology, a “proprietary modem,” and massive MIMO antennas. Those will transmit in the unlicensed 2.4GHz band to plane-mounted antennas made by First RF. The radio access network will be supported by Cisco’s software-defined core network.

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